(WKBN) — September is National Preparedness Month, and the Ohio Department of Public Safety wants its residents to consider the importance of being prepared and resilient in the face of disaster.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 48% of American don’t have emergency supplies. Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine says this month is a good opportunity for Ohioans to make a plan to expect the unexpected.

ODPS wants to bring Ohioans awareness on the four phases of emergency management:

  • Preparedness
  • Mitigation
  • Response
  • Recovery

“Preparation is key, and remaining vigilant throughout the year is paramount,” says DeWine.

This year’s theme is “A Lasting Legacy: The life you’ve built is worth protecting, prepare for disasters by creating a lasting legacy for your family.”

One way to observe National Preparedness Month is to consider the many types of emergencies or disasters than can impact your household or business. Start by making an emergency plan, including preparing an emergency kit in advance.

When making a plan, the Ohio Management Agency suggests thinking about the following:

  • How will you receive emergency alerts and warnings?
  • What is your household’s shelter plan?
  • What is your evacuation route?
  • What is your family or household’s communication plan?
  • Do you need to update your emergency preparedness kit?

“Emergencies can happen at any time and often without warning,” says Sima Merick, executive director of the Ohio EMA. “It’s crucial to think ahead and be prepared.”

For additional resources on disaster and emergency preparedness, click here.